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Digital Subscriptions > MusicTech > Dec-16 > Symphonic Brass

Symphonic Brass

Spitfire Audio’s latest offering is a full and very substantial library of brass, in a symphonic style. Dave Gale boots up a section to see how well it fits the mix…


Loaded in Kontakt, mid-project… Easy access to everything you need in a single multi-instrument

Before we get stuck in here, I have to confess to a couple of things… Number one, I am (in another life) a trombone player, and as such, I have always had a rather love/hate relationship with brass sample libraries, as they often fall very short of the mark, often being highly restrictive, and not sounding like the instruments they are designed to portray. Number two – this is a library of symphonic brass instruments, which ultimately means that it is designed to sound like the brass section from a symphony orchestra, which could clearly have enormous appeal to media composers, which is my second confession.

The arrival of this library is very timely, as I am involved in writing some pretty epic music for an upcoming computer-game score, so it’s going to get a major outing, in context.

With that out of the way, it’s time to see what’s on offer; but before we can do that, there is the small matter of installation. This is not a small library, and is normally delivered via download which, even on a reasonably fast connection, will take a few hours. Downloading takes place through Spitfire’s very own download manager, and allows for pausing in installation, or you can do what I did, and download it overnight. It’s a 60GB download, but will unravel to a whopping 102GB, so you will need a place to park the library, and indeed a fast drive to install it to. A 7200RPM ATA drive should do the trick, but my library was installed to a Thunderbolt RAID-based SSD, on a Mac; however, USB 3 will work very well, too, especially if you can be tempted to go the SSD route, which is heading South in price every day. You will also need the latest version of the Native Instruments Kontakt Player which is freely available, or Symphonic Brass will also run in the more advanced, full-blown version of Kontakt.

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About MusicTech

In this issue of MusicTech it's tips, tips and more tips… and a free calendar! Tips are always good and and this time, we’ve gone a little further: we’ve asked studios across the world, big and small, to offer their nuggets of wisdom. And they have, in their droves. So we have over 70 pro tips plus a calendar full of pictures of the best studios in the world! Elsewhere we have reviews of the plug-in that does your mixing, the new and rather incredible Keyscape from Spectrasonics and the latest modular synths – both reviews and tutorial. Add the usual software workshops, and over a 1GB of free samples and it's an end of year issue not to be missed!